NCMUG Community Outreach Program

The North Coast Mac Users Group has a long-standing tradition of service to our community. One of the principal ways we do this is through our Community Outreach program. There are two primary components to this program: annual grants and the donation of used computers and technical assistance to local schools and nonprofit organizations. Started in 2000, the annual grant program is our most recent effort. A portion of our annual income (primarily from the yearly Mac Computer Expo) is used to purchase a new Macintosh computer and printer which is then donated to a local school or nonprofit organization.

In operation since 1989, the longest running component of our Community Outreach is the donation of used Macintosh computers, printers and technical assistance to local schools and nonprofit organizations. Our first "client” was Grant School in Petaluma, where we assisted several teachers with their computers. That effort was expanded to provide service to several Sonoma County schools and nonprofit agencies. Macintosh computers, peripheral equipment and technical support to teachers has been provided to the following schools:

  • La Tercera Elementary School (Petaluma)
  • Petaluma Adult School • Gravenstein Elementary School (Sebastopol)
  • Wilson Elementary School (Petaluma)
  • J. X. Wilson School (Santa Rosa)
  • Robert Louis Stevenson School (St. Helena)
  • Stuart School (Santa Rosa)
  • Tomales Elementary School
  • Porterville Unified School District

NCMUG has also assisted the Petaluma and Rohnert Park COTS (Committee on the Shelterless) program by providing computers for children residing in these homes to do their homework. Similar equipment and support has been given to the low-income Washington Creek Apartments in Petaluma and the Petaluma Senior Center.

The creation of a computer loan program at La Tercera School is yet another facet to our Outreach program. Club members donated several computers and printers; using club funds we obtained others from the Computer Recycling Center in Santa Rosa. Now, children who don't have a computer at home or other access to a computer outside of school, can borrow a computer and printer from the school library for an entire school year.

Recently a web page was created by a member for the school. Sunburst Projects supports families living with HIV/AIDS by providing a range of practical and emotional year-round services, including summer camps for children. They recently requested assistance in providing computers and printers for two families with children in their program. We were able to provide two Macintosh computers and printers together with manuals, and provide instructional assistance.